River Journey 2012-2016

Peaty ponds on Black Band (NPM 71) (0)
oil on canvas. 1500. 0cm x 0cm.

On the flat top of Black Band, overlooking Alston town and the Scottish border lands beyond, bog water shimmers in a mid summer evening breeze, heather blooms and a curlew patrols the sky towards sunset.0
Meeting Place (0)
oil on canvas. 1750. 61cm x 122cm.

South westerly cumulus clouds scud over the moorland tops and feed the fell side streams. The gill sides (gulleys) erode. The jets fly on a great circle to Detroit. The moon moons at the sun. Nothing changes, nothing stays the same.0
Source 4 (RTJ4) (0)
Oil on canvas 250. 30cm x 30cm.

The real 'source' of a river rising in the blanket bog has multiple sources almost like the roots of a tree sucking in water or the early roots of Evolution in the tree of life. When you get in close to watch the movement of water at the watershed then the whole concept of 'a' source becomes meaningless. A drop of rain might land on the mire and of its splash droplets some might end up in the Tyne and some in the Tees. 0
A Way Through (0)
Oil on canvas 395. 51cm x 41cm.

River cuts through peat mires to find a way through wherever gravity takes it. Unframed.
Biscuit Factory June-July 2012.0
Tributary (NPM8) (0)
Oil on canvas 495. 51cm x 51cm.

River gets support from a tributary running down a steep sided valley known locally as a gill. Framed- floating, hand painted.
Biscuit Factory June-July 2012.0
Planned Crossing, Above Clargill (RTJ7) (0)
Oil on canvas 795 unframed. 76cm x 61cm.

River was nearly spanned by a railway viaduct in the 19th century probably around Clargill at Tynehead.
Biscuit Factory June-July 2012.0
Past Ancient Grounds, Alston (RTJ8) (0)
Oil on canvas 795 unframed. 76cm x 61cm.

River does a north turn following a glacial valley channel.
Biscuit Factory June-July 2012. Calder Gallery 20130
Meander past Lambley (RTJ9) (0)
Acrylic on canvas 1300 unframed. 102cm x 77cm.

River hits and obstacle and meanders round it, wisely.
Biscuit Factory June-July 2012.
Calder gallery 2013.0
Sandstone Barrier, Wydon Nab (RTJ10) (0)
Acrylic on canvas unframed. 102cm x 77cm.

River hits another obstacle, bounces off a cliff and doubles round to Halstwhistle.
Biscuit Factory June-July 2012.0
Deep Cut, Bill Quay (RTJ11) (0)
Acrylic on canvas 995 unframed. 120cm x 95cm.

River current mixes with tidal current- stirred but not shaken. A Russian beauty in a battered British river.
The 4 masted barque Kruzenstern glides quietly down the ebbing tidal stream past Bill Quay and Walker towards Wallsend. Sultry mid-summer clouds hang over the parched city tired from 200 years of industrial change. The mines are all closed and Poland exports coal to Tyneside. Once I caught a collier ship from South Shields to Ipswich and Tilbury power stations- coals from Newcastle. Now you can get fit by cycling from Garrigill to Wallsend on the c2c trail along the north bank. WW2 Royal Navy battleship HMS Nelson glided into the Tyne from the Armstrong-Whitworth slips just behind the sailing ship. The big yellow crane lifted her 16 inch gun turrets into place. The river was narrower then due to the number of ships moored up along the banks. Filthy but very busy like some rivers in China today.

The river's a heck of a lot cleaner now according to the Journal's environment editor Tony Henderson who told me it's the best salmon river in the country. In the mid 20th century it was dead with no salmon catch reported for years. Maybe one day they will stop dredging and people will be able to walk across the shallows at low water once again.

Biscuit Factory June-July 2012.0
Source 3 (RTJ3) (0)
Acrylic on canvas 275 framed. 30cm x 30cm.

River makes an alternative start.
Haslam's of Hexham 20120
Source 2 (RTJ2) (0)
Acrylic on canvas SOLD. 30cm x 30cm.

River sets off. Waning Moon rises.
Haslam's of Hexham 20120
Source 1 Tyne River Journey (RTJ1) (2012)
Oil on canvas SOLD. 30cm x 30cm.

River starts in the gurgling mires of the North Pennine watersheds. Looking north from the river's imaginary/magical source to the waxing/setting moon.

Unframed. Private collector.0
Burn, Weardale (2013)
Oil and acrylic on canvas. SOLD. 0cm x 0cm.

Imaginary upper Weardale burn.0
Cutting Through under Black Band (0)
oil on board SOLD unframed. 90cm x 85cm.

River meanders under Black Band.
Buscuit Factory June-July 2012
Alston Artspace Sept- Dec 20120
First Fall (RTJ6) (0)
Oil on board SOLD. 61cm x 78cm.

River plunges over limestone ledge. Underlying the moorland bogs are faulted layers of limestone, sandstone and shale which outcrop from erosion.
Biscuit Factory Gallery 2012.
Private collector.0
Realm of the Tide (RTJ13) (2012)
Oil on linen SOLD. 180cm x 120cm.

River arrives at the sea.
Imaginary view of the the river Tyne entering the North Sea at Tynemouth. This is the mirror opposite to 'Source' where the river starts in a tiny spin under a new moon. See article by environment editor Tony Henderson in Newcastle Journal Environment section June 16 or 23rd 2012.
Private collector.
Biscuit Factory Gallery, Newcastle, 2012.0
Realm of the Tide detail (RTJ13) (0)
Oil on linen SOLD. 0cm x 0cm.

Giant full moon settles in the west just before dawn over a sleeping city twinkling with street lamps, industrial illumination and the odd car headlight. A jet air liner streakes in low on approach from Spain. A fishing boat pushes on to North Shields Fish Quay. The river fans slowly out into the North Sea.0
©2004 Tom McElderry